Four entries in and I broke the weekly rhythm, hence the title change to “update”. Oh well.

To be fair, last week was spent traveling to California for my W+R Studios’ year-end meetings/holiday party. I flew in on Tuesday the 10th. Meetings and work related events lasted until the morning of Friday the 13th. I got to spend the rest of Friday and all of Saturday seeing friends and catching up on Watchmen. I flew to DC on Sunday the 15th, where I met up with Jenoa. Spent much of Monday the 16th exploring DC, before taking the train back to Charlottesville that evening.

I think I’ve travelled more this year than any other. Let’s see if I can get a comprehensive list:

  • January 3 — Fly back to CA after spending Christmas and New Year’s in Texas.
  • February 20—23 — Four days in Pasadena for an event at Fuller Seminary.
  • March 15-17 - Men’s retreat for church in Big Bear.
  • April 4-7 - Fly to Texas for four days to attend the Mockingbird Tyler conference. While there, Jen has preliminary talks about the College Minister position.
  • April 25-28 - Drive to and from Oakland for Jen’s friend’s wedding.
  • April 29-May 2 - Fly to Boise for RESO Spring Technology Summit. During this time, Jen is in Palm Springs for an education conference.
  • May 11-14 - Fly to Charlottesville for Jen’s interview at Christ Episcopal Church. She’s offered the position and accepts it on the last day of the trip.
  • May 24-27 - Drive to Crestline (near Big Bear) to stay with friends at a cabin for Memorial Day weekend.
  • June 17-19 - Much needed mini-vacation to Palm Springs. The first proper do-nothing vacation Jen and I had since our honeymoon.
  • July 13 - Day trip to Tijuana. Neither of us had ever been.
  • August 5-10 - Drive across the country from Rancho Santa Margarita, CA to Charlottesville, VA. Along the way we stay in Cloudcroft, NM; Glen Rose, TX; and Franklin, TN.
  • August 12-15 - I fly right back to California for the Product Team summit at work. Two days after I moved across the country. I’M NOT TIRED YOU’RE TIRED.
  • September 20-22 - Church retreat at Shrine Mont.
  • October 1-8 - Fly to Texas unexpectedly for Jen’s grandmother’s funeral.
  • October 15-21 - Fly to CA for Here We Still Stand and to see friends.
  • November 17-20 - Fly to Nashville for RubyConf.
  • December 10-15 - Fly to CA for W+R Studios year-end meetings.

    So, for seven out of twelve months this year I got on a plane, for a total of nine trips by flight. It could have been ten; I originally planned to fly back to CA to be in a wedding the week after the product team summit, but Jen wisely convinced me that that was going to be way more than I could handle. In the midst of all the traveling, we also said goodbye to close friends, bought a house, dealt with loss, hosted family for Thanksgiving, and Jen started a new job (at which she has been doing fantastic). We’ve been given amazing new friends, and moved to a town that we love. It’s been a whirlwind year filled with a range of emotions.

That last trip will be the last one I take for some time. Much as I love seeing close friends, I’m also looking forward to not getting on a plane.

In an odd way, I felt a peace when I left California last week. I’m accepting having both feet firmly planted in Virginia. Of course there will be trips back west, and some of the friends I have there could never be replaced. But it’s not home anymore. I’m writing this from Charlottesville, VA — my new home.

Reading

Still plodding through Fall and Advent. I also picked up Paul’s Apocalyptic Gospel by J. Christiaan Beker from The Center for Christian Study’s library as a supplementary interlude to my reading of Advent. I’m also learning the Go programming language and making my way through The Little Go Book.

Watching

Thanks to Collin, I’m mostly caught up with Watchmen. Just need to watch that finale. Jen is also trying to get me hooked on Mad Men and it might be working.

Listening

I told a friend of mine that I wanted to get into choral music. He recommended the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge. Their Best Loved Hymns kept me company on the turbulent flight out to California. Also thankful for Penguin Cafe’s Handfuls of Night and City and Colour’s A Pill for Loneliness.

10 Best TV Shows of 2019, I’m Assuming - A list from a friend. If you read no other year-end listicle, at least read this one.

“A Word That Would Light Up The Night”: Listening to Nick Cave’s Ghosteen in Advent - Mockingbird was kind enough syndicate this piece I wrote here a couple weeks ago.

A Primer for Staying Married at Christmas - I know, a lot of Mbird, this week, but some wise advice here.

on not owning my turf - Good reminder from Alan Jacobs.

futurity: an Advent thought - More advice reflections, this time from the aforementioned AJ.

Please for the love of Blarg, Start a Blog - A blogging jeremiad from Jay Springett